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Ultrasound machine donated by St. Ladislas Knights of Columbus is blessed by bishop

News of the Diocese

October 6, 2021

Ultrasound machine donated by St. Ladislas Knights of Columbus is blessed by bishop
Ultrasound machine donated by St. Ladislas Knights of Columbus is blessed by bishop
Ultrasound machine donated by St. Ladislas Knights of Columbus is blessed by bishop
Ultrasound machine donated by St. Ladislas Knights of Columbus is blessed by bishop
Ultrasound machine donated by St. Ladislas Knights of Columbus is blessed by bishop

Just as Respect Life Month got underway, Bishop Edward Malesic blessed an ultrasound machine donated by the Westlake Knights of Columbus St. Ladislas Parish Council 16373 to the Women’s Clinic Cleveland in South Euclid.

The local Knights group, in parternership with the national organization, raised funds to purchase the machine. Since 2009, the Knights of Columbus have been saving lives of the unborn with their Ultrasound Initiative, which provides ultrasound machines to qualified pro-life pregnancy centers. More than 1,300 ultrasound machines have been placed in pregnancy centers around the country that share the Knights’ values.

“By giving mothers ‘a window into the womb,’ we have changed hearts and saved thousands of lives,” said Charles “Bud” Tetzlaff, Ultrasound Committee chair and financial secretary of the St. Ladislas Council.

Upon qualification of a pregnancy center’s eligibility by the local Knights council and approval by the local diocese, US Ultrasound works with the center’s administration to discuss the best ultrasound equipment options within an established budget range to help meet the needs of the expectant mother and of the baby. Image quality, 2D, 3D capabilities and equipment longevity are among the issues discussed and evaluated. The average cost of an ultrasound machine is about $30,000.

“At St. Ladislas Parish Council 16373, we are passionately continuing this mission in Northeast Ohio. We have partnered with US Ultrasound Services, Inc., an Ohio-based national and global provider of new and refurbished ultrasound equipment and repair services. With our buying power and donations from generous friends, we can place even more ultrasound machines into these pregnancy centers that need them most,” Tetzlaff said.

Bishop Malesic said this was the first ultrasound machine he blessed in the Diocese of Cleveland. However, while serving as bishop of Greensburg, Pennsylvania before his appointment as Cleveland bishop, he blessed at least seven units.

“As followers of Christ, we are called to defend the right to life for children in their mothers’ wombs as every life has value. It is a gift that no one has the right to disregard. I offer my endorsement to the work of the Knights of Columbus, St. Ladislas Council 16373, and their efforts to provide life-affirming ultrasound machines to pro-life pregnancy centers,” the bishop said. “This modern technology is crucial in helping touch the hearts of mothers and transform the decisions they make. May the Lord bless the Knights in their work to protect and defend the lives of our brothers and sisters yet to be born.”

When a pregnancy center qualifies and the appropriate ultrasound equipment is identified, fundraising begins. Once the local Knights chapter raises half of the cost of the ultrasound system, the Knights’ Supreme Council matches the amount and the pregnancy center purchases the equipment provided by US Ultrasound. The equipment could be new or refurbished. Training and service during warranty are included. The Knights of Columbus Ultrasound Initiative began on Jan 22, 2009, the 36th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision that ruled that the U.S. Constitution protects a pregnant woman’s liberty to choose having an abortion without excessive government restriction.

David Dillingham, life program manager, Knights of Columbus Supreme Headquarters in New Haven, Connecticut, attended the blessing ceremony for the newest local ultrasound machine. He said the Knights in Ohio have donated more than $1 million to pregnancy centers for the purchase of 67 ultrasound machines, the fifth most of all states.

“This is an amazing feat for a state the size of Ohio and is a testament to the passion and hard work of all pro-life Ohioans,” Dillingham said. “It has been a pleasure to be part of this initiative of St. Ladislas Council 16373, as well as the Diocese of Cleveland, in placing this lifesaving ultrasound machine into the hands of the dedicated professionals serving the Women’s Clinic.”

Father Don Snyder, St. Ladislas pastor, attended the recent blessing of the ultrasound machine, as did representatives of the parish’s Knights Council, Deacon Dennis Conrad, David Parchem, Dan Barringer, Mike Dickey, Peter Canepa, Bob Bernath and Tetzlaff.

Also attending the blessing ceremony were Dennis Dunkin, US Ultrasound president, and salesman Tony Sinito, and representatives of Human Coalition, parent company of the Women’s Clinic, Bill Pierce, clinic director, Pam Gibson, office manager, and several clinic employees.

According to the Knights Supreme Council, ultrasound technology has been proven to be one of the most effective tools to empower women with crisis pregnancies to choose life. Calling it a “window to the womb,” they said when a woman considering abortion is able to see her unborn child and hear the heartbeat, her perspective often changes. They said because of this initiative, thousands of mothers nationwide have decided to have their babies.

For more information about the Ultrasound Initiative, click here.

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